Anne McCaffrey’s Dragonriders of Pern: The Complete Reading Order

Dragonriders of Pern is a science fantasy series that started in 1964. Written by Anne McCaffrey, the award-winning series is about the humans on the planet Pern who ride dragons!

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Reading the Dragonriders of Pern Series in Order

Dragonriders of Pern Books in Publication Order

Dragonflight (1968)
Dragonquest (1971)
Dragonsong (1976)
Dragonsinger (1977)
Dragondrums (1979)
The White Dragon (1979) – technically published before Dragondrums, McCaffrey recommended reading it after as some stories are concluded here.
Moreta: Dragonlady of Pern (1983)
Nerilka’s Story (1986)
Dragonsdawn (1988)
The Renegades of Pern (1989)
All the Weyrs of Pern (1991)
The Chronicles of Pern: First Fall (1993)
The Dolphins of Pern (1994)
DragonsEye (1996), also published under the title “Red Star Rising”
The Masterharper of Pern (1998)
The Skies of Pern (2001)
A Gift of Dragons (2002)
Dragon’s Kin (2003)
Dragonsblood (2005)
Dragon’s Fire (2006)
Dragon Harper (2007)
Dragonheart (2008)
Dragongirl (2010)
Dragon’s Time (2011)
Sky Dragons (2012)
Dragon’s Code (2018)

Dragonriders of Pern Books in Chronological Order

To know where to find the short stories, look below in the “more about…” section.

– The Survey: P.E.R.N. (short story)
Dragonsdawn (novel)
– The Dolphins’ Bell (short story)
– The Ford of Red Hanrahan (short story)
– The Second Weyr (short story)
– Rescue Run (short story)
Red Star Rising (novel)
– Ever the Twain (short story)
Dragon’s Kin (novel written with Todd McCaffrey)
Dragon’s Fire (novel written with Todd McCaffrey)
Dragon Harper (novel written with Todd McCaffrey)
Dragonsblood (novel written by Todd McCaffrey)
Dragonheart (novel written by Todd McCaffrey)
Dragongirl (novel written by Todd McCaffrey)
Dragon’s Time (novel written with Todd McCaffrey)
Sky Dragons (novel written with Todd McCaffrey)
Moreta: Dragonlady of Pern (novel)
Nerilka’s Story (novel)
– Beyond Between (short story)
The Masterharper of Pern (novel)
– Runner of Pern (short story)
Dragonflight (novel)
Dragonquest (novel)
Dragonsong (novel)
Dragonsinger (novel)
Dragondrums (novel)
– The Impression (short story)
– The Smallest Dragonboy (short story)
The White Dragon (novel)
– The Girl Who Heard Dragons (short story)
Dragon’s Code (by Gigi McCaffrey)
The Renegades of Pern (novel)
All the Weyrs of Pern (novel)
The Dolphins of Pern (novel)
The Skies of Pern (novel)

The Story of Dragonriders of Pern

Here is the presentation of the story of the (first) book Dragonflight:

“On a beautiful world called Pern, an ancient way of life is about to come under attack. Lessa is an outcast survivor—her parents murdered, her birthright stolen—a strong young woman who has never stopped dreaming of revenge. But when an ancient threat reemerges, Lessa will rise—upon the back of a great dragon with whom she shares a telepathic bond more intimate than any human connection. Together, dragon and rider will fly, and Pern will be changed forever.”

More about the Dragonriders of Pern series

Does the Dragonriders of Pern series need to be read in order?

Anne McCaffrey said she preferred people to read the books in the order they were written. That said, they were not published in chronological order.

There are stories set in several different periods of Pern’s history from initial exploration to more than 2,500 years after landing (AL). Also, the same events are sometimes told from different viewpoints in different stories.

You can choose to read the Dragonriders of Pern series in the publication or in chronological order.

How many books are there in the Dragonriders of Pern series?

For now, 24 novels and two collections of short stories have been published in the Dragonriders of Pern series.

Where can I find Dragonriders of Pern’s short stories and novellas?

The two main books collecting short stories and novellas are The Chronicles of Pern: First Fall (The Survey: P.E.R.N., The Dolphins’ Bell, The Ford of Red Hanrahan, The Second Weyr, and Rescue Run) and A Gift of Dragons (The Smallest Dragonboy, The Girl Who Heard Dragons, Runner of Pern, and Ever the Twain).

The “Beyond Between” short story was published in Legends II: New Short Novels by the Masters of Modern Fantasy (2003); and “The Impression” (1989), a short story co-written by Jody Lynn Nye and Anne McCaffrey, can be found in The Dragonlover’s Guide to Pern.

Has the Dragonriders of Pern books series ended?

Even after Anne McCaffrey’s death, the Dragonriders of Pern series continues. Her children Todd and Gigi took over with her blessing after working with her on some books at first.

Is there an adaptation of the Dragonriders of Pern books series?

In 1991, a comic book adaptation of “Dragonflight” was released as a set of three graphic novels by Eclipse Comics.

As for TV and movie adaptations, multiple projects have been in development for years now, but none have reached the screen for now.

There also are games: a board game, a book game, video games, and a role-playing game that are set in the Pern world.

About the author of the Dragonriders of Pern series

Who is Anne McCaffrey?

Anne McCaffrey (1926-2011) was an American-Irish author who was inducted by the Science Fiction Hall of Fame in 2006.

She became a full-time writer in 1965 but got her first story published during the 1950s–a short story titled “Freedom of the Race”. She started working on her novel “The Ship Who Sang”, the first in the Brain & Brawn Ship series, in 1959 while participating in the Milford Writer’s Workshop.

The first Pern story, “Weyr Search”, was published in 1967 and won the 1968 Hugo Award for best novella. Her second Pern story, “Dragonrider”, won the 1969 Nebula Award for best novella. In fact, she was the first woman to win a Hugo Award for fiction and the first to win a Nebula Award–she also had the first science-fiction book by a woman on the New York Times best-seller list.

Since 2003, Todd McCaffrey has co-written Dragonriders with his mother (or writes alone). His sister Gigi McCaffrey also wrote one.

What has she written beyond the Dragonriders of Pern series?

Anne McCaffrey was a prolific author. Beyond Dragonriders of Pern, she is known for The Brain & Brawn Ship series, The Crystal series, The Talents universe, the Petaybee series, the Acorna series, and more.